As you begin the estate planning process, you may come across the term “executor.” Generally, once you pass away, it will be the job of the executor of your estate to make sure your wishes are adhered to when it comes to your estate. You have the option of naming the executor of your estate in your will, but if you fail to do so, the court will appoint one when the time comes.
Estate executors have many responsibilities
It is important to understand the role of an executor before appointing one to one day manage your estate. Executors often must take on many responsibilities when managing affairs after the death of the decedent. Some of these responsibilities include:
- Distribute assets: The executor must transfer assets to beneficiaries listed in the decedent’s will. These assets include stocks and bonds, investments, collectibles, and other items of value.
- Pay off debts and satisfy creditors: The executor will use the decedent’s assets to pay off debts, including mortgages, credit card debt, and loans.
- Pay taxes: The executor will pay estate taxes as well as income tax for the last year of the decedent’s life
Who should I appoint as my executor?
You have a few options when it comes to appointing an executor. Typically, a trusted family member, lawyer, or accountant make the best executors, but anyone can be an executor as long as they are over the age of 18 and do not have any felony convictions on their record.
You took the trouble of writing a will to make your wishes known, but someone else has to be in charge of carrying out these wishes. The best way to make sure your estate is properly managed is to name a trustworthy executor to take care of your affairs. An estate planning attorney can help you choose the best person to manage your estate and assist with all your estate planning needs.